Huzzah, you Turd Merchants! I have returned to give you my list of what was pretty outstanding in 2013. Not just horror but pretty much everything that I felt was rad. These are my opinions of course, so you are welcome to agree or disagree and enjoy the power of free will! Isn’t life grand in that way??
Alright, well there wasn’t a crap load to get excited for this year. We were promised a lot of mind blowing geeky things but for the most part, it was all talk. Along with the things I loved, I will also post a few things that REALLY bummed me out. These won’t be heavily detailed but they will give you an idea of just how wicked cool they were to me. You must also take in to account that I’m going to be 37 this year and I’m a man child that still has a huge heart, huge child like wonder and awe and gets giddy with excitement when it comes to the geeky things I love and find kick ass. I’m not a crunchy, cynical fart head that has to have everything be serious and MEAN something in all of their movies they watch. Take me away from this world and I’m happy.
First up is HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS (Directed by Tommy Wirkola)-I had SUCH a good time with this flick. Saw it in 3D and I must admit, I was smiling almost all the way through it. It pushed all the right buttons for me. Obvious cheesy and over the top dialogue and action. The Special Effects were spectacular and in fact, a lot of it was practical, like the character of Edward, played by Derek Mears. Such an amazing animatronic costume. Spectral Motion did a fantastic job. I just could watch this movie over and over again. It has the style and feel of an early Sam Raimi flick. That sits very well with me. If you have a 3D tv, pick up this blu ray and check it out. it’s a hell of a solid 3D blu ray release.
JOHN DIES AT THE END (Directed by Don Coscarelli)-This movie really impressed me. I thought it was a kick ass little flick and found it to be wildly entertaining. I’m NOT a fan of his Don’s Phantasm films nor do I like Bubba Ho Tep. Really the only Coscarelli flick I like besides this one is The Beastmaster, which to me is a classic. John Dies At The End is based on the book by David Wong. I never got a chance to read it so I can’t comment on how the movie differs, but damn did I really love the flick. There are some dodgy CGI FX for sure, but overall, the characters and the weirdness just took me over. The performances were top notch all around as well. If you like odd, goofy, quirky and unique indie cinema, check this out ASAP. You may just find yourself with a new cult classic in your collection.
MOVIE 43 (Directed by 8 different directors)this was considered one of the worst flicks that came out in 2013. The movie was originally shot back in 2010 and was put together by Peter Farelly (one half of the brothers Farelly). I’m not sure why it was looked upon with such harsh eyes. I would assume people just do not have an absurdist sense of humor, which I do. This was very similar to the classic Sketch flicks, Amazon Woman on The Moon and Kentucky Fried Movie. Not saying Movie 43 is a classic, but holy fudge did it make me laugh pretty much through out. Some of the sketches are pretty meh. My favorites would be the Sketch with Hugh Jackman and Kate Winslet and a ball sack hanging off of Hughes neck. The ball sack is the star of that sketch and it’s pretty damn funny. I also really dug the Sketch with Halle Berry and Stephen Merchant and the game of Truth or Dare they play. Just give it a shot and I bet you will laugh at least 2 times! It’s not going to change your perception of what a comedy film should be, but if you like some low brow laughs, this is a flick to check out.
EVIL DEAD 2013 ( Directed by Fede Alvarez)- Some screamed blasphemy! Being a huge horror fan, you would think I would jump on that “Remakes are bad” bandwagon, but I shall not do so. I could care less about remakes. I honestly do not know what the big deal is. Sure, Hollywood is running out of ideas, but to get all poop boned over a silly thing like a remake of a horror movie you love so much is kind of bonkers. You don’t have to see it ( but you will), you will always have the movie you love SOOO much to go back and watch whenever you want. These remakes for the most part are not made for the 36 year old fan who “grew up with this movie”. They are made for the 16 year old kids of today. Sometimes they end up being pretty damn awesome, like this one. Evil Dead 2013 was a highlight. I of course am a giant fan of the Sam Raimi trilogy, 2 being my favorite, and I didn’t see this as a threat at all. I was excited to see this flick and it paid off BIG TIME. I was entertained throughout and actually creeped out a bit. I thought the way it was shot was beautiful and threw some nice Raimi nods in there. The sound design was eerie and unsettling and again evoked some nods from the original. The PRACTICAL EFFECTS! Yes there were a few CG enhanced bits but overall they went full on old school and it was a magical delight to see. Put your cynical bandwagon hype away for a bit and check it out.
IRON MAN 3 (Directed By Shane Black)- What can you say? It’s another Marvel! The best of the Iron man films and another knock out of the park for Marvel Studios. They are KILLING IT. I’m not a DC fan at all really. I do love Batman ( The Character/Comics and Burton films) but HATED the Nolan universe. I really love Power girl and I do love a good chunk of the Vertigo titles, but overall, DC is just not for me. I’m a Marvel kid and always will be. And this one was written and directed by the writer of The Monster Squad!? Come on!! While I do have a few reservations when it comes to how they handled the Mandarin ( Which I hear they are fixing for the future) I thought Iron Man 3 was such a well made sequel and really capped off that franchise on a wonderful high note. So far, Marvel can’t fail.
STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS ( Directed By J.J. Abrams)-Right up front, I am NOT a Star Trek fan. I have never been able to get into the show. I must admit, growing up my aunt did take me to all of the films as she was a fan and thought I would like them, so I saw them and they just never connected with me. I’m a Star Wars kid and will continue to be so ( prequels be damned) But when J.J. Abrams took the reigns of Trek in 2009 I was FULLY on board. He turned Trek into something exciting and thrilling for me. He, also being an unabashed Star Wars fan, made Trek something I could get excited for. The sequel was another awesome home run for me. Not as emotional for me as the first one, but the action and adventure was amped up which I really loved and the addition of Cumberbatch as Khan was a stroke of magic. Cumberbatch, because of his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes, has become a favorite actor of mine. I won’t watch any of his “dramatic” work as I’m just not a fan of serious, dramatic and BORING movies, I will watch him in any sic-fi, fantasy, horror work this guy does. As for Abrams, well I am a HUGE fan. His film Super 8 is one of my favorite films of the last 15 years or so. With him on board the next Star Wars??? Heaven.
PACIFIC RIM ( Directed by Guillermo del Toro )- Hands down this is my favorite film of 2013. Have been a fan of Del Toro’s since Blade 2, which I think is such a kick ass film. While I didn’t see his earlier films until after Blade 2, I became hooked on this director very quickly. I think he can do no wrong. I am also a huge fan of Godzilla so finding out that del Toro was making a Kaiju film was pretty much happy dance time. I’m not sure why geeks out there didn’t like this movie. It is everything it promised it would be, nothing more. Even more so if you are a fan of Godzilla films and you didn’t like this, well you are on some serious hate fueled drugs. This is a geekgasm, pure and simple. Giant Robots kicking the crap out of giant monsters. Magic. SO MUCH FUN!
THE CONJURING ( Directed by James Wan) This one surprised me. I didn’t think much of what I was seeing as far as promotions and plot goes, but while watching it, I found myself really sucked into the film and it creeped me out. I don’t get creeped out easily, but this one shivered me timbers. I think a well crafted ghost story indeed.
ELYSIUM ( Directed By Neill Blomkamp ) District 9 was a fantastic first flick and his follow up is just as good if not better. I don’t know why I liked this so much but again, the story and the world sucked me in, as any good movie should. I also thought the sic-fi of it all was wonderfully cool. A solid flick in my opinion and one I look forward to checking out over and over.
THOR: THE DARK WORLD ( Directed By Alan Taylor) Wow-I loved this movie. This for me was better than Iron Man 3 and to date, other than Avengers, is my favorite of the Marvel movies. I am also a huge fan of Thor so that may be why. The sequel is what the first movie SHOULD have been. This was a straight up comic book sci-fi fantasy adventure and I loved every minute of it. While Malekith was one of the worst villains from the Marvel stable as far as movies go ( the character from the comic is actually VERY cool) the rest of the film was so good it didn’t matter. This was Thor and I think having a director on board who handled episodes of Game Of Thrones really helped the tone and look of the movie. It was far more gritty and real feeling, as much as that can be possible in a fantasy adventure film. I just really loved this movie and can’t wait to own it.
HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE ( Directed by Frances Lawrence) I just was not about the Hunger games at first. I felt like i would not like it at all. I did not read the books and I didn’t see the first one until about a month before Catching Fire came out. My Fiance is the one that got me to check out that first flick and I’m glad she did. I was all about it. I’m not running out to read the books or collect anything from the franchise, but I really dug the hell out of these two movies so far. The sequel just pulled me into that world even more. While the first half can be a bit of a drag, the second just gets balls deep and made me yearn for the next flick. Those of you who are comparing this to Battle Royal? Stop. They are two different beasts and if you would watch the hunger games, you would see that. Both great and both different.
FROZEN ( Directed by Jennifer Lee) Holy hell, Chris Seaver liking a Disney movie? I am NOT a fan of Disney at all. The Incredibles is an amazing film, but I have never excepted that it’s a Disney flick. That had more to do with Brad Bird than anything else. I suppose Frozen has everything to do with Jennifer Lee as well. I loved this film. I want to see it again in 3D. I loved the animation, the characters and the music. CRAZY! I want to own this movie. I came out of it with a big smile. touched the huge sappy side of me.
DOCTOR WHO: THE DAY OF THE DOCTOR ( Directed By Nick Hurran ) Once again, of all the geek things I should have been into, Doctor Who always eluded me. I’m a horror, sic-fi, fantasy nut and Doctor Who was a show that I of course knew about, and would see various episodes growing up on PBS featuring Tom Baker as the Doctor, but when it was rebooted in 2005 I admit I tried to watch it and just could not get into it. for YEARS this happened. I would watch that first new series over and over and could never get through it. Something about it rubbed me the wrong way. It wasn’t until my Fiance, again coming to the geek rescue, said I should sit down and watch Series 2 with David Tennant as the Doctor, that I began to really enjoy the show. I think I just could not get behind Christopher Eccleston as the Doctor. I’m not a fan of him as an actor and I felt his chemistry with everyone on that show was terrible. With Tennant at the helm of the Tardis I was swept away and am now a pretty HUGE “Who” fan. I cried my eyes out when Tennant regenerated into Matt Smith and at first I was SO against this new Doctor. That went away pretty quickly because Smiths version is pretty fantastic as well. Tennant will always be MY Doctor, but Smith holds his own. I was so excited when this 50th anniversary movie was announced and it would bring back both Billie Piper as Rose and Tennant as the Doctor, and it would some how all make sense in the Matt Smith universe of the show. Boy did they do a bang up job! We were lucky enough to see it on the big screen in 3D and it was another one of those smiling from ear to ear kind of screenings. LOVED it. Another highlight of the 2013 movie going experience for me.
There are other films I did see in 2013 but none of them really stood out for me the way these did. You would think I would have put The Hobbit on this list as I am a huge LOTR’s fan, BUT quite frankly, these Hobbit movies just arent hitting me on a level I should be hit with. I do enjoy them, and Smaug as a whole was better than the first part of the new trilogy, but the old magic just isn’t there. I very much want Peter Jackson to go back to making his low Budget Horror films. It was seeing Bad Taste in 1989 on video that made me a Jackson fan and I would prefer he head back down that sleazy and sloppy road. ( Although let it be known that his Lord of The Rings trilogy is my favorite combined FILM of all time)
There you have it. My list of the best flicks of 2013 in my opinion. I will be compiling a list of my most anticipated 2014 movies shortly. until then, Never let the wind in your sails exceed the strength of your own genitalia